September 30, 2015: Scientists have discovered the first ever biofluorescent reptile while filming small sharks and coral reefs in South Pacific.
The glowing sea turtle found in the Solomon Islands is the very first bio-fluorescent reptile discovered.
It was found that the hawkbill sea turtle was emitting neon red and green light!
The footage of the discovery, made in July, was made available for public for the first time on September 29, 2015.
A team of scientists from the City University of New York, lead by David Gruber, is credited with founding the footage.
Gruber added that the turtle looked like an alien spaceship but was “absolutely gorgeous”. He was filming coral underwater with his team when the reptile surprised with its presence, reported CNN.
Many questions have emerged with the footage. The chemical composition of the turtle is what many scientists are wondering on, and it is also unknown as why it is emitting light.
Readers should know that bio-fluorescence is not same as bioluminescence. In bioluminescence, organisms produce their light with chemical reactions. This can be commonly seen in species like fireflies.
On the other hand, bio-fluorescence refers to the phenomenon when an animal absorbs light and then radiates it, which is often in varied colors.
However, bio-fluorescence in marine animals isn’t rare as crabs and insects have shown such properties, but this is the first time that a turtle has been spotted.
It is also known that bio fluorescence works like sunscreen for some fishes and even as a lure.